The National Advocate for People with Down Syndrome Since 1979

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Jessica's Down Syndrome Pregnancy
Jessica's Down Syndrome Pregnancy

It was October 22, 2009 - the day I got a positive pregnancy test. I was only 19 years old. I told my boyfriend and he was a little nervous also. At the ultrasound the tech looked weird the whole time and I could feel something might be wrong. A week later I got a call from my doctor who told me the blood work came back positive for Down syndrome. I could feel my throat swelling and my heart drop to my stomach. As tears dropped down my face I ran to my boyfriend's house to tell him - he was speechless. I went to see my doctor before my next ultrasound. He was explaining this is not a positive thing yet and gave me the option to get an amniocentesis. He explained the chance of miscarriage. I said no matter what the problem I don't want the amniocentesis.

At 17 weeks I had another ultrasound - it's a girl! I had another ultrasound at 28 weeks and this time they explained more to me. They said that my daughter has two holes in her heart, fluid on her brain and was still not growing as expected. At 36 weeks the tech told me that the baby wasn't growing. She had only gained one oz. within a month period. They called my doctor and suggested to induce labor or she might die. Way to scare a new mommy to be!

On June 2, 2010 we arrived at the hospital and they told me they didn't expect her to come until the next morning. I lay down and rested until 11:30 that night. The nurse checked me and said "oh don’t worry honey, you're only dilated 5cm. so go to sleep – she'll be here tomorrow after noon." Well, little did they know I went from 5cm. to 10cm. in one hour. I pushed For 30 minutes and out came Keela, weighing 5lb. 2oz.

I remember the doctor taking her to a pediatrician in the corner. I heard him say that she has Down syndrome features. I was prepared for it, but when everyone else heard it they were very distant from the situation. A very nice woman came to talk to us. She explained that her son has Down syndrome and everything would be alright. When we got her official diagnosis I already knew I had an angel.

When Keela was three weeks old she got pneumonia and we stayed in the hospital for five days. A few weeks later she started early intervention. I would get upset from time to time when she wasn't where other kids her age were. After a while it didn't matter because I knew she would do everything at her own pace. My baby girl rolled over at two months old - it was amazing. She held her head up at six months old. At eight months old she finally sat up on her own. She finally started to crawl at 14 1/2 months old. I was so proud of her because I knew she could do it.

Since birth Keela has been back and forth to the hospital for many appointments. She sees 11 different specialists. Sometimes it gets a bit stressful but I wouldn't change this life style for the world.




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